which is born of the Spirit is spirit.John 3:6
There is a disturbing trend among many of the evangelical churches today which has been described as ‘social re-construction’ This has as its motive an understandable desire to see the world living righteously. However well meaning these desires are, a christianised world, is, as C.H.Spurgeon once remarked, ‘a blasphemy’.
Faith or values?
It seems that many evangelicals would encourage the men and women of this world to live their lives according to Christian values and precepts, by presenting to the ungodly the Scriptural practice of divinely ordained marriage between one man and one woman; or by anti-abortion campaigns; or the idea that convicted criminals may be reformed; or street pastoring, or that drug takers and alcoholics should be led into social programmes whereby their addictions can be dealt with. (Let us note that the Muslims have the same type of programmes and objectives too). This is merely dealing with the symptoms in society of a terrible disease which only the Divine Physician can cure.
Yes, we are to be going about doing good and to visit and help the fatherless and the widows in their affliction, but to feed and help prodigals without showing them the way back to their Father’s house may seem to be commendable; but it is to leave them LOST. When Jesus healed a person He pointed them to faith in Himself – and so should we point to Him. Not simply to a better way of living.
It is also commonly held that the Christian can use political pressure and so influence the governments of the day, so as to lead them to govern as if their government were theocratic. Such things will never come to pass until the reign of Christ Jesus our Saviour.
It is undoubtedly true that by the knowledge of the Moral Law of God – the Ten Commandments – and the teaching of the judgement to come; that men are in part, restrained from the grosser acts of evil, just as the fear of going to prison restrains some from committing the crimes their hearts would have a mind to.
We read in Romans 1; 19 – 32; that the uninstructed savage having in himself that knowledge that there is a Creator, would in his sinful ignorance and fear seek to placate his ‘offended gods’ by sacrifices and superstitious practices. Likewise the Jew believes that in his keeping of the laws of God he is righteously acceptable in the sight of his Maker.
However, restraint and self-righteousness are not conversion. For Christians to leave men short of eternal salvation by teaching them moral values, and leaving them in that state is not just mistaken; but monstrously wicked.
Ye must be born again. John 3: 7
The natural man has little desire to keep the law of God, neither can he if he would. For the Bible teaches that by the law is the knowledge of sin and all the world is guilty before God. Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight: Only those born again by God the Holy Spirit possess that new heart and new spirit which now seeks to live according to the will of God. When the true Christian can fulfil any part of God’s will – however imperfectly – it is his delight and joy. ‘I delight to do thy will O God’ is in his heart.